April 1923

Communist International

President of the Communist International

April 1923





Inprekorr, iii, 16, p. 364, 21 April 1923


Dear friends,

I read your letter with the deepest interest. The tragic story of Mesopotamia's subjection reveals with the utmost clarity the hypocritical and treacherous policy of the English Government. And where has English imperialism behaved otherwise? In India, Egypt, South Africa—everywhere its policy is the same: lies, treachery, and pitiless cruelty. I have just read in the papers that as a result of the unceasing reprisals of the English in Mesopotamia a new and widespread revolt has occurred.

The Communist International will follow the course of this heroic struggle with the greatest attention. The English hangmen will probably try not only to drown it in the blood of the Mesopotamian people, but also to break it down from within by tricks and cunning. There have been rumours that they are going to proclaim an amnesty for the arrested and deported leaders of the liberation movement and that they are even prepared to allow nationalist ministers to enter the cabinet of the treacherous Emir Feisal.

I am sure that past experience will lead you to reject these hypocritical concessions. Clearly Sir Percy Cox's intention is to get a favourable vote ratifying the treaty between England and Iraq, and to secure his bloodstained rule over Mesopotamia.

In your letter you observe that the regime established by English imperialism in your country violates the principles of the League of Nations. Obviously there is some misunderstanding here. The League of Nations was created after the war by the imperialist victors—England, France, etc. —so that they might more easily despoil the defeated. At the head of this predatory institution stands England itself. There is no difference between the 'principles' of the League of Nations and the 'lofty principles' which England is operating in Mesopotamia when it bombards the defenceless population from the air. In calling your attention to this misunderstanding may I ask you to explain it to your comrades, so that they may avoid the grave consequences that would inevitably follow from an incorrect idea of the true nature of the so-called League of Nations.

The emancipation of Mesopotamia will not be attained with the help and support of an imperialist State or of the League of Nations, but by the organized struggle of the broad masses of Iraq against the occupiers. To convince the masses that their material position will be made easier and better by driving out the English, to denounce with contempt all those treacherous Mesopotamians, with the Emir Feisal at their head, who would found their personal wealth on the oppression of their people, to win the confidence of neighbouring countries—if this were accomplished it would ensure the victorious outcome of your heroic struggle against English imperialism.

The Communist International, which unites millions of revolutionary workers and peasants in England, France, Germany, Russia, etc., assures you of its sympathy and support in your struggle for freedom.

If you, honoured friends, think it useful to come to Moscow, I look forward to our meeting.

If events make it impossible for you to come, I would ask you to collect and send documents, material, and photographs on the English regime in Mesopotamia.

If you think it possible to write a pamphlet on this question, it would be useful to have it published in European and Oriental languages.

With most cordial greetings,

The President of the Communist International.